The remaining drugs that fall within the 5-MeO group are not controlled under the Misuse of Drugs ACT 1971. They fall within the category of 'new psychoactive substances' ('NPS'). In order to address the issue of NPS the UK Government passed the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016. This new legislation, which came into force on 26 May 2016, creates the following offences in relation to NPS: importation including for personal use; exportation; supply; and production. The maximum sentence for these activities is seven years in prison. Possession is not an offence under the legislation but possession in a custodial setting, . prison, is an offence attracting a maximum of two years imprisonment. Please see our guide on the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016 for a more detailed analysis of the law.
The International Olympics Committee (IOC) has banned anabolic steroids in sporting games; any sports person found abusing or using steroids will be banned and in some cases fined. For example Marion Jones was found guilty of using performance-enhancing supplements in the Olympics and was banned and had to forfeit her medals and prizes.
In the United Kingdom steroids are classified as a class C drug; therefore, it is illegal to manufacture as well as distribute steroids but it is legal for someone to possess steroids for personal use. The problem with this law is that it is hard to find steroids that are real and that are made in sterile labs. The only way to get steroids is to purchase them from abroad in countries that do not have laws on steroids, such as Thailand, India and Mexico. These countries do have a few problems with counterfeiting steroids so therefore the purchaser should be wary and careful when choosing a steroid to buy.
Other countries where steroids are completely illegal to distribute, manufacture as well as possess include the United States, Canada, Germany, Australia and Italy. Countries where it is legal to possess but illegal to sell include Saudi Arabia, Portugal, Poland, Estonia and Jordan. Countries where it is legal to sell as well as possess include Egypt, Mexico, Thailand, Iran and Mexico.
All bets are off the table when high-dose testosterone and its many metabolites are used illegally, such as with anabolic steroid abuse. Strokes, embolisms, and cardiovascular disease are all more likely, as is sudden death, and liver and kidney disease. 44 In women, acne, irreversible deepening of the voice, baldness, increased facial hair, enlarged sex organs, breast reduction, depression, and infertility have all been reported. In adult men that abuse anabolic steroids, acne, baldness, permanent infertility, gynecomastia, loss of libido, erectile dysfunction, testicle shrinkage, and profuse sweating are all reported side effects. Increased testicular cancer hasn't been reported, though. 45,46